5 July 2024

The ATO joins the Australian Financial Crimes Exchange

The Albanese government is implementing a world leading anti‑scam plan, that has already seen scam losses fall for the first time since 2016.

Collaboration across the scams and fraud ecosystem enhanced with real time information exchange is a core weapon the government is using to fight back against scammers and fraudsters. As part of strengthening this collaboration, the ATO is becoming the first government agency to become a full member of the Australian Financial Crimes Exchange (AFCX).

The AFCX coordinates the sharing of data and intelligence across the public and private sector to combat financial crime. The ATO’s membership in the AFCX will support efforts across the economy to detect and prevent financial crime and fraud activity.

The AFCX Anti‑Scam Intelligence Loop will be used to help identify impersonation scams that attempt to phish identity details, such as those that purport to be from MyGov. Early identification will help to deter and prevent fraud and financial crime.

This follows the government’s decision for the National Anti‑Scam Centre to join the AFCX intel loop, which enables near real time data sharing between participants about the latest tactics and tools used by scammers.

The Government recently announced the ATO Counter Fraud Program, which provides $187 million over four years to significantly bolster the ATO’s ability to tackle fraud against taxpayers and the tax and superannuation systems, and to invest in preventative measures to stop fraud before it occurs.

The Albanese government is further strengthening consumer protections and taking the fight to scammers, with legislation planned to impose tough obligations on banks, telcos, and social media companies to get scammers off their services.

Quotes attributable to Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Financial Services, Stephen Jones MP:

“Collaboration across the scam ecosystem is crucial to making Australia the hardest place for scammers to operate.

“Scammers and fraudsters aren’t mugs, they’re cunning criminals who adapt and change their tactics and we need to be able to do the same. Having near real time data sharing is vital that.

“The ATO’s membership of the AFCX is another step towards making Australia the hardest place in the world for scammers to operate.”